Millions in dispute over a film: Dan Ackerman, editor-in-chief of the well-known gadget blog Gizmodo, has filed a lawsuit against Apple, the Tetris Company and other people in a Manhattan court. The journalist wants at least 6 percent of the production budget for the “Tetris” film, which has been on Apple TV+ since spring. The payment could be $4.8 million if Ackerman wins – $80 million was invested.
book written off?
The litigation is about copyright issues. Ackerman published a non-fiction book called The Tetris Effect in 2016. In it he describes how the game from the Soviet Union, which was created during the Cold War, conquered the world and became one of the most popular games ever. Ackerman says he sent a pre-release version of the book to Tetris Company, the owner of the rights to Tetris, to discuss a collaboration. They then “copied” the work for the Apple TV+ film and at the same time threatened to sue him if he sold film or TV rights.
Ackerman’s lawyer told Reuters that the lawsuit seeks justice and “respect for the work.” Ackerman further claims that the film borrows “a number of specific areas” from the book and is “similar in almost all essential respects”. The Tetris Company had denied Ackerman licenses for projects that could go hand in hand with the book.
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Key aspects of the lawsuit: Ackerman accuses Apple and the Tetris Company of copyright infringement, unfair competition and “unlawfully interfering with its business relationships.” The screenwriter of the “Tetris” film, Noah Pink, began “copying” Ackerman’s book in 2017.
Neither Apple nor representatives of the other defendants could be reached for comment on the lawsuit, Reuters reports. “The Tetris Effect” was published by the American subsidiary of the major French publisher Hachette.
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